Ever since I have wanted to include hair in my own work. For the past year I've been collecting the clippings that fall to the floor every time I have my own haircut. Unfortunately, I wear my hair short, so there isn't a lot to collect and the pieces are only short. I wasn't really sure what I was going to use the hair for, I just knew that I would use it eventually.
A few weeks ago my mother had her long white hair which she wears in a French roll cut off. She is in her 80s now and for some time has been finding that brushing and washing her hair made her back ache. She always receives compliments for her hair and I think it was a tough decision for her to make, but in the end practicality won the day. When she told me she had finally done it, my first question was "what did you do with the hair?" Fortunately, her hairdresser (who visits her at home) had bundled it all up in newspaper before popping it into the bin. My mother was only too happy to rescue it and put it aside for me. She finds a lot of my work pretty mystifying, but she seems thrilled at the idea that she, in the form of her hair, will be making a powerful contribution to my work, and will "live on", as she says.
Access to some lovely long hair has set my mind spinning with ideas and I am trying to capture them in my diary lest they disappear into the black cavern that occupies the space formerly known as my memory. It seems to me that these works will form a more cohesive group with the ones I have already completed for my masters, than the book I mentioned here. So...despite the start I have made on it, that book is to be relegated to "future projects" for now.
It seems like an unfortunate disruption to the flow of my work, but I haven't had the luxury of a "flow" for a while...progress seems to be coming in fits and starts. I would have had to take a break from it for a while anyway, because I have to put together at least one more edition of "Like Weather" to send off to Mackay for the Libris Awards. I also have to prepare for an exhibition in Melbourne in February. I'll be showing an installation I exhibited here in Brisbane in 06 at the National Ceramics Conference. It's called "Wraith" and some of you may have seen the photos of the original over in my photostream on Flickr. There is also a little mention of it in the profile here. There will obviously be more as the date approaches.